For the last few months I’ve been using Microsoft 365 on my Chromebook and I’ve been really impressed with the results. It is a huge improvement compared to just over a year ago when I was not too impressed with the functionality.
When you use Google Docs you can save your files locally but I’d strongly recommend saving your files to the cloud. This is easily done with Google Docs because all Google accounts come with 15GB of Google Drive storage free of charge. This makes it easy and free to save any files you create using Google Docs to the cloud.
If you start using Microsoft 365 on your Chromebook you’ll also notice that you get cloud storage from Microsoft. Microsoft Cloud storage is called OneDrive and it makes it easy for you to save files created using 365 to the cloud. The issue is saving Google Docs to OneDrive is a hassle and the same can be said when trying to save Microsoft 365 files to Google Drive.
Google Drive is integrated into ChromeOS
One of the benefits of using Google Drive as your cloud storage is that it’s integrated into ChromeOS. This makes sense because both ChromeOS and Google Drive are Google products. Therefore, they have ensured the process of using their cloud storage on your Chromebook works just fine.
I’ve been using Google Drive to save my Google Doc files for a good few years now. It works absolutely fine and means my work is secured because it’s in the cloud. If I ever lose my Chromebook or it malfunctions I’ll still have access to all my files. This is why I would always recommend saving files in the cloud.
The 15GB of cloud storage is a good amount of storage considering it’s provided for free. You can also easily upgrade to a paid plan if you need more Google Drive storage space.
OneDrive is not integrated into ChromeOS
Using Microsoft 365 means you can use apps such as Word or Excel on your Chromebook. This is great for anyone who prefers to use Office, and you can even install these apps as PWAs to get the best experience.
Just like Google ensures Google Drive works seamlessly with Google Docs. Microsoft has made it easy to use Microsoft 365 with OneDrive. In fact, it’s far easier to save any files created using 365 to OneDrive than it would be to save them to Google Drive.
This means to get the best experience you would be better off using both cloud storage services. When using Google products it’s best to save to Google Drive, and when using Microsoft 365 make the most of OneDrive. You get 5GB of OneDrive storage when using the free version, which is 10GB less than you get with a free Google account. That being said, if you pay for a subscription of 365 you’ll get 1TB of storage.
OneDrive does not show on ChromeOS File Manager
The good thing about using Google Drive is that it’s integrated into the ChromeOS file manager. This means you can easily view files from the cloud. You’ll also find it’s really easy to save files to Google Drive when using Android apps, PWA apps or working directly from a browser.
When you’re using Microsoft 365 apps it’s still easier to find Google Drive files than it is OneDrive files. This is due to OneDrive not being integrated into ChromeOS, so the files are not always easily visible when using apps. This is the main reason why I looked for a way to integrate OneDrive into ChromeOS. The method I’ve used isn’t perfect because you’re relying on a third-party app, and although it works it isn’t perfect.
In the future, ChromeOS will integrate OneDrive by default. Until then, if you want to get the most out of using Microsoft 365 on your Chromebook. I would strongly consider using the method I’ve used to integrate OneDrive with ChromeOS.